The mystery isn't completely solved, but the FDA has made a significant break in determining the source of the salmonella Saintpaul outbreak, which has sickened 1,250 people in 33 states so far.
A jalapeño pepper tested at the Agricola Zaragosa distribution plant in McAllen, Texas was a genetic match for the strain of salmonella associated with the outbreak, FDA officials told reporters today.
Officials revealed that the positive pepper came from a farm in Mexico, but wouldn't get more specific than that. A pepper recall is underway.
The agency's advice to consumers hasn't changed since the last update. The FDA advises consumers to avoid eating fresh jalapeño and serrano peppers for the time being. Tomatoes, once considered to be the prime suspect in the outbreak, are now considered safe to eat.
Officials suggested there may have been more than one vehicle for the spread of the illness. In the beginning stages of the outbreak, information led investigators to tomatoes as the source.
The FDA is now working on gathering information for the trace forward to determine what stores the tainted peppers were distributed to.
For more information on the salmonella outbreak, go to the FDA's website.
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